Monthly Archives: March 2016

Tips on how to ask for a pay rise

Asking for a pay rise can be a daunting and nerve wracking experience. It may be something that you put off, waiting and hoping for your employer to recognize your amazing contribution to the company.

However, I would recommend that you take the bull by the horns and have the discussion with your manager.

By following the tips below you may find yourself with a fantastic pay rise. So book in that meeting!


1. Timing 

Before you ask your manager for a meeting consider when is the best time for you both to sit down undisturbed.

In most workplaces this would mean Monday mornings are best avoided because your boss may well be firefighting. Conversely Friday afternoon is probably not a great time either as your boss will, in all likelihood, be winding down for the weekend.

If your team is working towards a deadline and a big pitch then avoid this period too.  You want your boss to be as relaxed as possible with time to listen to you so consider having the meeting after lunch.


2. Research 

Before you go and ask for a 20 percent increase do your market research. Check that your role in your industry is paying this externally. If it isn’t then be prepared to justify why you think your role deserves the increase.


3. Be prepared 

When you have your meeting with your line manager say that you’d like to discuss your salary. Explain that you’ve made a note of your justifications for this request and that you’d like to go through it with them if they are agreeable.

Reasons you could use to support your request for a pay increase might be:

  • Your role is not aligned with market rate for the same or broadly similar work.
  • Your role has taken on more responsibility.
  • A new geographic area has been added to your area of responsibility.
  • You’ve taken on new line management responsibilities.

Be armed with any relevant facts and figures so that, if your boss asks any questions, you can respond immediately.


4. Dress code 

I always tell my clients “dress for the job you want, not the job that you have”. You want to make a good impression at this meeting so, as well as having your list of justifications for your request, consider what you wear to the meeting.


5. Follow up with an email  

I believe that it’s always good practice to send an email after the meeting thanking your manager for their time and giving a summary of what you discussed.  If you agreed a date by which they’d get back to you then add this to the email.


6. Ignore personal reasons

When asking for a pay rise stick to the facts in relation to your job and don’t mention that you need to buy a new car and that this increase would allow you do that. Needing a new car, holiday or mortgage is not a valid reason to ask for a pay rise and may make your line manager question your professionalism.


7. Feedback

If, for any reason, your manager comes back to say the increase in salary has not been approved then ask them for feedback on why this is.

Clarify with your manager what you need to do in the next few months to be considered for an increase and ask if your salary can be reviewed in six months time.

Once you have had this discussion follow it up with an email confirming all the details and if you’ve agreed to review it again in six months time then add this to the letter.


If you’re  about to ask for a pay rise then I would love to hear how you get on.

5 tips on how to resign

5 tips on how to resign

Perhaps you’ve handed in your notice many times before or perhaps this is your first time and you’re feeling anxious about how to tell your boss. Making the decision to leave your job and resign can be a really exciting time or it may be something that you’re dreading.  However you feel it’s important to know how to hand in your notice in a professional manner. One that enables you to leave the door ajar and that ensures the process is a smooth and amicable one.

I remember the last time that I resigned. I was so excited as I was about to leave London and move to Bristol with my boyfriend. But I was also really worried about leaving my boss in the lurch. Below are some tips that I followed which ensured that I was warmly welcomed back into the office to say hi a couple of months after leaving.


  1. Reflect – if you have another job to go to then you will have (hopefully!) thought about why you want to leave your current company.  Please don’t ever resign in the heat of the moment. Do that and it’s more than likely that you’ll wake up the next day and regret it. And you may not then be able to retract.
  2. Tell your boss face to face wherever possible. When I resigned I was in my company’s UK office and my boss was in the German office and not due to visit the UK for some time. This meant I had to tender my resignation by a phone call. Not an ideal situation. So when I called her I quickly got to the point and then we agreed that we we’d have a follow up call a few hours later. This gave her the time to digest the news and we could then put a plan in place together on how to recruit my replacement.  I think it’s good practice to follow up this discussion with an email or letter confirming your conversation with useful information such as when your last day will be and how much holiday you have left to take etc.
  3. Be prepared  – During the meeting or shortly after it, your company may offer you a salary increase to entice you to stay. Before the meeting know how much you are worth and what would make you stay.  However don’t be offended if you aren’t offered an increase. Most companies realize that there’s a strong likelihood of you leaving after six months anyway as there’s often reasons other than salary as to why someone leaves a job.
  4. Be as helpful as you can – Once you’ve handed in your notice offer to help as much as possible. You never know when you may want to go back or back or have them as one of your clients in the future.  Ask your manager what are the most important tasks that you can complete before you go and to whom you should hand over information.  If there isn’t an up to date job description for your role then offer to produce one and meet with a number of recruitment companies that you can then recommend to your boss.
  5. Be Professional – Your boss and your team may have been surprised by your resignation. If you were working on a particular piece of work with them they may begin to panic about how it will be delivered with one team member down. This may result in them getting stressed and displaying some negativity towards you. Please don’t take this personally. Such a reaction is actually a compliment towards your contribution.  It’s important that you remain professional at all times during your notice period.

I just gave you 5 tips on how to resign, it would be good to hear which one stood out to you the most and why. Please feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn.


Caroline Arnold 

Executive Coach

T: @carnoldcoaching

F: Caroline Arnold Coaching


The Importance of Friendship

The Importance of Friendship 

I recently did an advert for a magazine called “Just 4 Her” which is a magazine for military wives and girlfriends and thought I would share with you as well as I think friends are so important what ever your circumstances.

I’d feel so lost if it weren’t for my five best female friends. Therefore I will be so bold as to say the role they play in keeping me sane is critical.

They’re my sounding board and my companions. They’re my validation on what to wear to a wedding. They entertain me when I can’t concentrate at work and give me a reality check on my latest business idea.  They make me laugh and they give me support and a confidence boost when I’m having a moment of self-doubt.

I could go on and on but the important thing is that I that I need them all in my life to help me deal with the various highs and lows that life can sometimes throw my way!

We’ve been friends for years and we message each other almost every day. Sometimes it’s to discuss the finer points of ‘The Great British Bake Off’. Another time it’s to gossip about Tess Daly’s dress on ‘Strictly’ or to ask how someone’s date or job interview went.

As we’re all such a close group we know when someone needs the extra support and friendship. And a simple message sent to say ‘good morning have a fab day’ can go a long way when someone’s having a tough time.

Although I live a couple of hours away from them all I know that if I needed them they’d be there for me. And as I get older I realise how important it is to have these amazing women in my life.

I’m lucky to have a fantastic, supportive partner and family. But for me there is something very special about having a strong support network of female friends. And ‘m so grateful and privileged to call these five women my best friends.

I have found that, as I get older, what I need and want from my friends changes. To be honest, when we first met I wanted friends who wanted to come out with me on a Friday night for dinner to discuss work and the confusing world of dating. Or be just as happy spending Saturday night at home watching X-Factor together while scoffing a whole tub of Quality Street chocolates.

Fast forward eight years and I find that I’ve got a much deeper bond with them all. I rely on them to remind me of how much I’ve achieved whilst trying to navigate the daunting challenge of moving to a new city, buying a house with my partner for the first time all the while setting up a company.

For women in the army, whose partner may be away for months at a time, such a strong support network is invaluable. It helps to realize there are others out there who understand what you are going through.

It can be challenging moving to a new country and starting again in all aspects as well as maybe raising a young family. So to have this group of friends is so important.

So, if you’re lucky to have a best friend then why don’t you drop them a message now? Say hi and wish them a good day – I know they’ll appreciate hearing from you.



Caroline Arnold 

Executive Coach

M: 07886 794 742

T: @carnoldcoaching

F: Caroline Arnold Coaching